Saturday 18 November 2017

No sign of tension as PSG sink limp Bayern

Paris Saint-Germain’s Edinson Cavani celebrates scoring their second goal against Bayern Munich with Kylian Mbappe and Neymar. Photo: REUTERS/Charles Platiau
Paris Saint-Germain’s Edinson Cavani celebrates scoring their second goal against Bayern Munich with Kylian Mbappe and Neymar. Photo: REUTERS/Charles Platiau

Independent.ie Sportsdesk

Paris Saint-Germain so impressively dismissed a week of controversy and dressing-room politics by utterly dismissing Bayern Munich 3-0.

It wasn't just another of the big wins they have for so long craved over one of the Champions League's leading super-clubs, but also a gloriously collective display, and a statement for the Champions League far greater than any put out by the club about tensions among their stars.

It was also an indictment of Bayern that by half-time this game wasn't about whether they could get back into the contest, but whether grown men were happy playing together. A character study, rather than a contest.

That's how bad Carlo Ancelotti's side were. There was still an individual stand-out even if this was a night that was supposed to be about the collective - and it wasn't Neymar.

After a week of noise about the Brazilian's relationship with Edinson Cavani both players found the net, but it was the supreme Kylian Mbappe who cut through all of that - and the Bayern defence - with pure talent and ability.

He may not have scored but he was the player most responsible for his two attacking team-mates scoring, after Dani Alves hit the first.

Barcelona edged to a 1-0 win over Sporting Lisbon following an own goal from Sebastian Coates at the Estadio Jose Alvalade to maintain a 100pc start in Champions League Group D.

The La Liga leaders were left frustrated following a goalless first half as the Portuguese side produced a determined defensive display, but broke the deadlock four minutes into the second half when Luis Suarez's flicked header deflected on to Coates and back into the net.

There was, though, no 100th European goal for Lionel Messi, who saw a couple of chances saved and also fired over from a free-kick.

In the same group, Juventus got their first points of the campaign with second-half goals from Gonzalo Higuain and Mario Mandzukic securing a 2-0 victory over Olympiacos.

Irish Independent

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